What's old is new again
This weekend we once again saw the economic benefits of embracing and preserving the past in Sherbrooke and surrounding areas. Sherbrooke has had, as its economic driver, the historic Sherbrooke Village for many decades. The Village has brought numerous events and thousands of tourists to the area and employs many people on a seasonal basis.
But as in most economies, diversification is key and Sherbrooke Village has found yet another way to leverage its history into numbers at the gate and money in the community. By embracing the somewhat new steampunk trend, the Village is increasing the marketability of the area's history, drawing in a younger and growing audience. Tapping into new and diverse interests in history is just one more way that Sherbrooke Village uses the past to create the future.
History and community spirit also played a big role in the divestiture of the Port Bickerton Lighthouse last fall from the federal government to the Municipality of the District of St. Mary's. The ceremony commemorating the hand-over that took place last Saturday was a testament to what community groups can do and the value history has both in community and as a economic asset. The Port Pickerton and Area Planning Association has made the lighthouse the focal point in the community's tourism assets and has plans to create an artist retreat which will further increase the profile of the community and the Lighthouse. Once again, future prosperity is fuelled by the past.
History, in all forms is helping shape the economic present in Sherbrooke, including personal history. This week's paper introduced readers to Max MacDonald, the new owner of the Beanie's Bistro on Main Street, Sherbrooke. MacDonald has made his mark in the Cape Breton music scene and his childhood memories of summer's spent at his grandmother's house in Port Hilford have brought him to our neck of the woods. His experience and love of the area will surely benefit the community as a whole.
As the saying goes, what's old is new again and in the case of the Municipality of St. Mary's, it's bringing opportunity and prosperity as well.